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pmd/Infineon’s 3D Indirect Time-of-Flight in LG G8 ThinQ

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World-first Front Facing 3D Indirect ToF camera in the LG G8 ThinQ smartphone, with NIR 3D Camera and flood illuminator.

pmd Infineon 3D ToF in LG G8 - System Plus Consulting

The new pmd/Infineon REAL3 image sensor, reference IR 2381C, offers more than simple face authentication for the LG G8 ThinQ smartphone. The indirect Time-of-Flight (ToF) camera and the flood illuminator allow face recognition, and also the recognition of the palm vein patterns. Moreover, the ToF module is used for the new ‘Bokeh’ smartphone photography mode. Bokeh allows users to take pictures without blur in real-time. Lastly, the new indirect ToF module allows users to interact with the phone without touching it, using hand gestures.

The ToF Module in the LG G8 smartphone is based on the REAL3 image sensor, a Near Infra-Red (NIR) sensor and a flood illuminator, using a new-generation Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Laser (VCSEL) die from ams AG. The total solution is designed by pmd.

This report is focused on the analysis of the 3D depth-sensing camera, comprising the NIR ToF camera module with REAL3 CMOS and the flood illuminator. This new NIR image sensor is 40% smaller than the 2016 module from Lenovo Phab2Pro, with the same 224×172 pixel definition. This is coupled with the new generation of the VCSEL laser die from ams AG, which is 12% smaller than the last generation. The new VCSEL electrode has been re-designed, and the cavity diameter reduced by 15%.

This report analyzes the complete 3D indirect ToF camera, provided along with cost analysis and price estimation for the module.

It also includes a physical and technical comparison with other 3D camera systems, such as the pmd/Infineon ToF image sensor in the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro, and the Panasonic MN34906 charge-coupled device (CCD) ToF image sensor in the Vivo Nex Dual Display. The comparison looks at system integration, the NIR camera module and the illuminator architecture.

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